Other Types of Dementia

As well as the more common types of dementia there are some less common types of dementia including Young Onset Dementia, some of these are detailed below:

Dementia with Lewy Bodies

Where abnormal structures, known as Lewy Bodies, develop inside the brain. This type of dementia shares characteristics with both Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s diseases. The physical symptoms are often in just one part of the body, and may include:

  • Rigidity and stiffness
  • Difficulty starting movements (known as ‘bradykinesia’)
  • Slowness of movement
  • A shuffling walk
  • Tremor
  • Loss of facial expression
  • Changes in the strength and tone of the voice

It accounts for around ten per cent of all cases of dementia in older people and tends to be under-diagnosed. Symptoms are similar to that of Alzheimer’s disease. Other symptoms can be problems with attention and alertness, spatial disorientation and difficulty with ‘executive function’, which includes difficulty in planning ahead and co-ordinating mental activities. People with Dementia with Lewy Bodies can also experience hallucinations and delusions – seeing or hearing things which are not there, with 90% of people with the condition being affected.

Fronto-temporal Dementia

Covers a range of conditions, including Pick’s disease, frontal lobe degeneration, and dementia associated with motor neurone disease. All are caused by damage to the frontal lobe and/or the temporal parts of the brain. These areas are responsible for our behaviour, emotional responses and language skills. Unlike other types of dementia, fronto-temporal dementia usually develops in people who are under 65. It is much rarer than other types of dementia.

Alcohol Related Brain Damage (ARBD) – previously known as Korsakoff’s Syndrome 

Is a brain disorder usually associated with heavy alcohol consumption over a long period. Although not strictly speaking a Dementia, people with the condition experience loss of short-term memory. Symptoms include difficulty in acquiring new information or learning new skills and may bring about a change in personality. At one extreme the person may show apathy (lack of concern and/or lack of an emotional reaction), or at the other, talkative and repetitive behaviours.